Internet Privacy Policies of the Largest International Companies

Internet Privacy Policies of the Largest International Companies

Alan R. Peslak (Penn State University, USA)
Copyright: © 2006 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/jeco.2006070103
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Abstract

This article is a review of Internet privacy policies of the world’s largest companies. The report begins with a background on the right to privacy and privacy issues arising out of Internet usage. Attempts to regulate Internet privacy and self-regulatory effectiveness also are reviewed. The methodology for this study is to update and extend Internet privacy analysis by analyzing Web sites of the largest international companies (Forbes International 100) for inclusion of fair information practices. In addition, a collection of consumer-centered practices is defined and studied. The general finding is that within Forbes International 100, fair information practices and consumer-centered privacy policies are not being followed closely. It is also found that large U.S. firms are more likely to publish a privacy policy on their Web site. Finally, if a large international firm does publish a privacy policy on its Web site, the level of compliance with fair information practices and consumer-centered policies is not significantly different between U.S. and non-U.S. firms. Implications of the study for researchers and practitioners are reviewed.

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